Thursday, March 27, 2008

Arugula Tart

This recipe came from "The Produce Bible" and originally called for ricotta, but I thought goat cheese would be a good substitute. The consistency is very quiche-like, and I think that next time I would up the cheese to egg ratio.

1/2 C goat cheese, at room temperature
3 eggs
2-3 C arugula
1/2 small onion, finely diced
Olive oil
Nutmeg, salt and pepper
Puff pastry

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a greased tart pan with the puff pastry. Prick the pastry with a fork, cover with parchment, and fill with baking weights or dried beans. Bake for 15 minutes, remove the weights and parchment, and then bake for another 5 minutes. Set aside.

Heat the olive oil in a pan and sautee the onions until soft. Stir in the arugula until just wilted. Meanwhile, combine the egg and cheese, and season with a little nutmeg, salt and pepper. Leave some lumps of cheese in the mixture. Add the arugula and combine. Pour into the pastry crust and bake for about 25 minutes, or until set.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Kumquat-Lime Marmalade

This recipe is adapted from "The Produce Bible." The original calls for either limes or kumquats, but I decided to use a combination of kumquats, mandarinquats, and key limes. Yum!

2 lbs fruit (limes, kumquats, or a combination)
5-8 C water
6-10 C sugar

Start by halving all the fruit and then slicing it very thin.
Remove the seeds and place them in the cheesecloth to make a little bundle. Put the fruit, seed bundle, and water in a large, non-metallic bowl and leave overnight, covered.

Transfer the contents of the bowl into a large pot. If you are using just kumquats, add 1/4 C lemon juice. Bring the mixture to a boil and boil for 20 minutes before reducing to a simmer. Let cook for 30-45 minutes and then add the sugar. Stir over low heat until the sugar is dissolved. Bring to a boil, stirring often, for another 20 minutes. Once the mixture acheives the desired consistency, transfer to jars and seal.

Sunday, March 23, 2008


These jelly-filled cookies are traditionally made for the Jewish holiday Purim, and the shape is meant to represent the three-cornered hat that the biblical villain Hamen wore when he tried to have Queen Esther (and all the Jews) killed. In some countries, people also eat Hamen's ears! This recipe is from Joan Nathan's "Jewish Cooking in America." Over the years, my mother and I have discovered that certain jams work better than others: fruits like blueberries, that have less natural pectin tend to get runny and ooze out of the cookies while they bake. For this same reason, store-bought jam is preferable to homemade, unless you have some very firm homemade jam on hand. Our favorite (for its flavor and consistency) has always been apricot.

2/3 C butter
1/2 C sugar
1 large egg
1/2 tsp vanilla
3 C unbleached flour
1 tsp baking powder
Pinch of salt
Jellies or jams of your choice

Cream the butter and sugar. Add the egg and vanilla and process till smooth. Add the dry ingredients and process until a ball is formed. Chill the dough for 2-3 hours, or overnight.

Taking 1/4 of the dough at a time, roll out on a lightly floured board to about 1/8 inch thick. Cut into 2 1/2 inch circles. Drop one teaspoon of jam in the center of each circle, and then bring the dough up around it, pressing the three corners down well. Bake at 375 degrees on a well-greased cookie sheet for 10-15 minutes, or until the tops are golden. Makes 36 cookies.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Dinner for One

First of all, I want to apologize for the lack of recipes in the last few months. Lately, I've had less opportunities to cook new and interesting things that seem to be worth sharing. Tonight's dinner is a good example of the sort of food I cook for myself: borsellini with goat cheese, pine nuts, and chervil. Simple, improvised, and easy. So from now on, I will probably only post here when I have a social occasion that allows me to prepare something more elaborate. Hope you understand!